Hi everyone! Long time, no post! I had my most recent cystoscopy earlier this month and it was clear! Hurray! I am approaching the 2-year mark since my diagnosis.
Like a good girl, I am on a maintenance schedule with BCG, currently getting three weeks of treatments every six months. The dosage of BCG has been reduced, so the side effects are manageable.
Here's the tough part for me: catheter insertion and removal. I have tried bringing in headphones/iPod to listen to something to help me relax while they're getting the catheter in place, but there is always some sharp pain associated with that process. (I am a yoga/pilates instructor and have tried every breathing and relaxation trick I know, to no avail.) Perhaps the last two years, which have included two TURBTs, numerous cystoscopies and several rounds of BCG, have left me with a beaten up urethra. Maybe there's some scar tissue in there?
My question: would I be out of line for asking for pharmaceutical assistance to get through these BCG treatments? Something like xanax or valium? If anyone has any suggestions, I'm all ears. I usually protest loudly at the idea of taking any unnecessary medication, but I have tried everything I can think of, short of bringing in a bunch of aromatherapy candles and a harpist.
Otherwise, I'm healthy and strong, and starting to think that maybe I have beaten this ... fingers crossed, knock on wood ...
I am almost finished my first round of BCG -some discomfort with the catheter, but I haven·t needed any medication to relax me. But for the cystos I always take valium (5mg)before I go, and find it really helps - just takes the edge off . I think when you know what the procedure is , however much you try to relax, your brain just won·t let you think about anything else except what·s going on down there! If you try with a tranquilizer, remember you should not drive afterwards. Glad your treatments seem to be doing the trick and beating the cancer.
I don't think it would be out of line. I take two tramadols an hour before the BCG treatments and it really helps. I made the mistake of taking it right before going in and it didn't go off in time. I also have tried the valium but it didn't help with the pain, but it does relax you:) Any how, for me it is night and day with or without the pain meds.
I have had many cystos and 24 BCG. During this time the catheter wasn't a problem. However, I did have a lot of pain several years ago after another surgery. It was discovered they used the wrong size, and the nurse was not very good at inserting the tube.
I would think "whatever it takes" for you to be comfortable the better.